Jim Prince, director of the Manville School in Boston, said Weymouth has sent students to his program and similar ones. “In the sense of providing services and looking to be helpful, my understanding is they have a solid reputation,” he said.
“I always feel for parents who are in this type of situation,” Prince said. “I also know and understand that the services are expensive and not enough resources are provided to the local school districts. There is a great unfunded federal mandate for [special education] services.”
While the two families are dealing separately with the Weymouth school system, their cases are linked in a way. Griffin said her son became very upset when he learned about the bullying incident and wanted to start an anti-bullying club that would protect students.
If her son, who weighs more than 200 pounds, “witnesses an act of bullying or is bullied himself, we really are afraid that he’ll go into vigilante mode and he is going to hurt somebody,” Griffin said. “He’s not a bad kid; he has a huge heart. If, after the fact, he learned he was responsible for hurting another child, it would crush him.
“We didn’t want all this personal information [out] in such a public forum,” she added, “but if it can help him get where he needs to be, so be it.”
Appeals of local special education placement decisions go to the state Bureau of Special Education Appeals.
Johanna Seltz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.